We’ve learned from some of our favorite pop culture moments how to handle our most tender experiences like breakups. With these external examples as references for how to process our emotions, we’ve developed habits of turning inwards to chocolates and wine or outwards to excessive partying and dating. We’ve even gone so far as to change one of the more permanent things about ourselves: how our hair looks.

Of course, this is all up for interpretation as our hair is to be changed whenever we’d like. And still, “breakup bangs” exist because enough of us have cut them when we’ve felt at our lowest. The empowerment we seek is freedom from how we feel, who we were, and everything that came with that last encounter. Sources say there’s more to it, though, than sadness and desiring a fresh start. Here’s what we’ve learned and gathered about breakup bangs. 

What Are Breakup Bangs?

Breakup bangs are bangs that have been cut by the wearer or their hairstylist due to a breakup that the wearer recently experienced. When the wearer cuts them, it’s considered to be under more dyer constraints, often more emotional and within hours of the relationship ending. The wearer will, in front of their mirror, take the front, center chunk of their hair and cut it to frame the top and possibly sides of their face.

When this change is sought out by the wearer and committed by their hairstylist, it is also an emotional response to the breakup, but one in the hands of a professional. The decision itself has been known to spark questions amongst the friends and or family of the wearer. And the reason behind it all, though temporary, has caused extreme enough feelings that the wearer wants to do something equally or similarly as extreme. 

Why Do People Cut Their Hair After A Breakup?

The “why” of it all feels important at the start sparking the behavior in the first place. Losing a partner whether compatible or less than compatible is a life change that can cause friction. The friction, whether internal or external, can lead to lasting feelings that aren’t the easiest to process. And going outside of our bodies to express what we’re feeling inside is sometimes the only way to make sense of it all. Cutting breakup bangs after ending a relationship feels like the regaining and/or relinquishing of control. Taking control back from the former partner who has impacted your feelings can feel like empowerment. And, in the same breath, letting go of the desire to control outcomes can feel like doing something on the fly that is a visible, tangible change. 

New Things To Try When Coping With Breaking Up 

Leaving behind the version of ourselves that didn’t see it coming or that actually liked our former partner can take time. Physically, the process can be started with the swipe of a pair of scissors. Something about it happening right above the eyes feels symbolic too, but this isn’t the only way to experience change that isn’t tied to any particular version of ourselves. There’s makeup to play with, places to create new memories in, friends and family with whom you can reconnect. Often our relationships can become our whole world to the point of thinking, once they end, that there isn’t anything (or anyone) else out there. False! The places that we’ve always wanted to try, the conversations that we’ve always wanted to have and the personal time that we put on the backburner are now all up for grabs.

Giving ourselves permission to enjoy new things can lead to learning new things about ourselves. And we deserve the self discovery. Deepening the connection to ourselves can also lead to a level of awareness that can help us better navigate romantic connections. Although that isn’t the sole reason to do it! We wish you the most beautiful breakup bangs and a compassionate recovery.